Prime accused in Lalithaa Jewellery heist case dies in Bengaluru hospital

N. Murugan, prime accused in the Lalithaa Jewellery heist in Tiruchi and in the Punjab National Bank’s Bikshandarkoil branch burglary at Kollidam, died in a Bengaluru hospital on Monday.

Police sources in Tiruchi said Murugan, 45, had been lodged in the Bengaluru jail in connection with a case filed against him there. Murugan was undergoing treatment for various ailments at the Bowring and Lady Curzon hospital, where he died, the sources said.

A native of Tiruvarur district, Murugan was the alleged mastermind behind the Lalithaa Jewellery heist case reported in October last year. He, along with his close relative, Suresh, and a few others, looted jewellery weighing over 20 kg from the jewellery outlet in Tiruchi.

Murugan’s involvement came to light after the police apprehended Manikandan, who was named as an accused subsequently, in Tiruvarur district while conducting vehicle checks.

Subsequently, Murugan, Suresh, the latter’s mother, Kanakavalli, and another accused, Ganesan, were arrested, leading to the recovery of over 20 kg in stolen jewellery. The Fort Crime police, which registered a burglary case, had filed a chargesheet in the heist case in July. During interrogation, Murugan also revealed his involvement in the burglary of 470 sovereigns of gold jewellery and ₹19 lakh in cash from the Punjab National Bank’s Bikshandarkoil branch in January 2019.

The modus operandi adopted by the gang, allegedly led by Murugan, in both burglaries was to drill a hole in the wall to gain entry and loot the valuables.

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Printable version | Nov 26, 2020 5:59:54 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/prime-accused-in-lalithaa-jewellery-heist-dies-in-bengaluru-hospital/article32958159.ece

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